A Typology of Understanding

Part of the Contributions to Phenomenology book series (CTPH, volume 50)

The givenness of the Other is a crucial problem for the Cartesian Meditations. It is crucial because the problem of methodological solipsism that occurs on the Cartesian path to the transcendental-phenomenological reduction must be solved if transcendental phenomenology is to be possible as first philosophy. It is difficult to decide whether the Fifth Meditation really offers a solution for the problem. Husserl himself pointed out that the material of the Fifth Meditation actually belongs to the context of the Second Meditation. Furthermore, the explanations of basic concepts used in the Fifth Meditaion are insufficient. Sufficient explanations can only be found in the Analysen zur passiven Synthesis. A phenomenology of understanding and methodical hermeneutics can ignore the problem of methodical solipsism in the Cartesian path to the transcendentalphenomenological reduction. The analysis of the givenness of the Other–and the significance of the givenness of the Other for the givenness of the lifeworld–is probably the root problem for the path to phenomenology via the universally expanded human sciences. But this problem can be ignored as well. A phenomenology of understanding (and even a phenomenology of logic) is indeed possible in a mundane attitude. The task here is simply to give a phenomenological description of the givenness of the Other without ending in the paradoxes mentioned in the introduction to part II.


Cultural Tradition Natural Kind Living Body Literary Tradition Semiotic System 
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© Kluwer Academic Publishers 2004

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